SAPPHIRE NOW Offers A Glimpse Of The Post-COVID-19 Economy

Companies must revisit processes and technologies to make their business safer, more agile and collaborative


Hong Kong kicked off 2020 facing the global challenge of the COVID-19 virus outbreak. Now, halfway through the year, we are stepping into what is hoped will be a brighter period. The question is what will the post-COVID-19 economy look like?

SAPPHIRE NOW provided some answers. For a start, the annual forum was “reimagined” as an all-digital event taking place entirely online. That change alone paints a pretty good picture of the shape of things to come. In fact, maximum safety and social distancing looks likely to be the primary consideration for the foreseeable future.

Other experiences and likely future outcomes were on show during the Executive Dialog discussion panels, which were packed with major players on the local business landscape. The participant list included Damien Wu, Director of Digital Transformation, who offered a snapshot of what COVID-19 has meant, and will continue to mean in the immediate future.

It could have been worse

For example, although COVID-19 has affected the entire business world, at the Chinachem Group it was the hotels and shopping centers that bore the brunt. Damien believes things could have been much worse! 

Luckily, Phase 1 of the Group’s SAP-based digital transformation plan was completed just before the outbreak. That included the roll out of the core SAP Financial Module and the SuccessFactors HR Modules – which delivered employee self-service capabilities, that made all the difference when employees had to work offsite. 

Other technology breakthroughs, like the introduction of the first delivery robots in Hong Kong hotels, enabled Chinachem to safely overcome the worst of the pandemic, and be well prepared when the economy recovers.

The ability to innovate is critical

The Group is now looking at different technologies, including AI and robotics, to make work safer and easier. Business intelligence solutions to transform data into knowledge faster. And cloud technology to be more agile. However, Damien noted that technology alone isn’t enough. The ability to innovate is also critical, which is why Chinachem is focused on making innovation a core competency.

More changes will be certainly be needed. Damien advised every company to revisit their processes and technologies with a view to making their business safer, more agile and collaborative. Because in today’s environment, it is no longer enough for an organization to be efficient and effective – innovation is critical.

Click here to register SAPPHIRE NOW Reimagined Hong Kong – Executive Dialogue: Chinachem Group.


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